House Cleaning

02.44.00 - Mark

After letting my blog sit in its own juices for the last few months while I was at camp, it managed to get hit by comment spam pretty hard - one post had something like 327 spam comments that snuck past my (admittedly crude) filters.

The total ammount of spam I've recieved this year was close to 10MBs of data! Just for comparison all of my 1500 some blog posts takes up about 1.4MBs - 1/7th the space!

That's not to say it's all been deleted. Because I was in there doing some heavy duty cleaning I shifted some structures around to make it more manageable and I'll need to fix some of the related scripts to match it - so don't worry too much if commenting is broken over the next day or two.

On the other hand there's no doubt in my mind that spam is a serious problem, even for small bloggers using homebrew software.

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13.11.59 - Mark

I'm in class. Fortunatly I only have four hours of bull**** to put up with this semester. Unfortunatly my Advanced Web Graphics ITN 210 course is quickly deteriorating into "How to use Dreamweaver, *sigh* again" course, with a side of "Remedial Windows Networking for Users".

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Flying High

23.45.18 - Mark

Due to ongoing technical troubles with the iBook it's taken forever and a day to actually get around to posting these photos (from mid July). They are however extremely cool. Links go to the full size images. Maybe one day when I have my iBook working again I'll stich together the video of the flyover taken on another one of the trips over camp, because that's a real treat.

Ariel photo of Camp Raven Knob
Ariel photo of Camp Raven Knob. Lake Sabotta, Lake Watson, the Vaugn-Woltz OA Arena, and a few camp buildings

Flying in over Lake Sabotta
Flying in over Lake Sabotta towards the aquatics area and OA Arena - just to give you an idea of how low we were flying :)

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What to do with a third arm

01.11.08 - Mark

This evening my brother and I went to see a movie at the local subrun theater, Before the movie we grabed a bag of popcorn and a coulpe of drinks and took our seats. Unlike most theaters, the local subrun actually pops their popcorn, however this batch was well below par, at times tasting like tin, excessive ammounts of salt, styrofoam, and other generally not-good-substances (sometimes all at once).

After the movie we loidered around as the main employee is a friend and talked about random things. Eventually getting to the point of how both the movie and the popcorn were a bit disappointing. At which point our friend told us he had cleaned out the popcorn machine the night before and we had been eating the oldest remains of the first batch popped in the newly clean macheine. Yummy. "I'm pretty sure I got all the cleaning agents out - let me know if you grow a third arm" he said.

Zaphod BeeblebroxThen of course we started talking about the implications of a third arm, not obviously useful third arms, like Zaphod Beeblebrox third arm, more along the lines of Total Recall's martian mutant type third arm i.e. growing out of your forehead third arm.

Assuming that lawsuits were out of the option, what exactly could you do with an extra underdeveloped mutant apandage? We figured hollywood, or at least movies. Surely SciFi or some other network would pay to have a multi movie deal with an actual monster, and when those movies fail horribly you could always star in the unrelenting spoofs.

Of course the truly brilliant would insure the arm for a nice large sum of money, go about his acting career and when the work dries up, suffer a tragic incident that involves the amputation of the extra arm.

Such is life in my house. We now return you to me regular ranting about failing technology and increasing frustrations with High School University.

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09.47.08 - Mark

Right now I hate technology. Not just computers mind you, I'm very quickly heading towards becoming a luddite due to the sheer frustration of having every little bit of technology around me fail almost completly and (increasingly) inexplicably. From DVD players to bedside lamps - everything I touch seems to be breaking down. You can bet I'll be in a charming mood when I return to High School University tomorrow for one of the courses I should have been able to take last year so I wouldn't be there for 2.5 years.

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The Nuclear Option

01.01.49 - Mark

After a couple days of fighting on and off with the ClampBook and its mysteriously screwed up OS I called in the nuclear option. Reformat and reinstall.

While it is a pain in the ass no matter what, the reinstall is giving me the chance to do a few things right. I've partitioned the internal drive (something I should have done when I got it nearly 2 years ago) and I'm slowly installing all the software that makes my life easier. The other thing will be updating some of the older software on the system.

Fortunately there wasn't that much critical stuff lost to the formatting because of the full backup I did when the motherboard started acting up back in February/March. Plus pretty much everything I've done since then was dropped onto the external drive rather than the primary drive. For a complete reinstall this really isn't that big a deal.

The lesson. Have a backup. Also, know what software you really use. Here's my reinstall shopping list (in no particular order). There's some other stuff, like Photoshop and some Apple software I'll need to reinstall but the list below is most of the freeware /shareware goodies that make my life easier

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ConvergeSouth 2006

13.06.25 - Mark

Looks like registration is up for ConvergeSouth 2006. I had a great time last year (see the post from last year) and plan on going again this year.

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15.55.58 - Mark

I think the iBook is finally giving up the ghost. It has done an amazing job of not accepting perfectly good login since I unpacked it and now it's refusing to admit there's an internal hard drive. Lovely.

I may let it sit a day or two and attempt some more surgery on it, but considering all that the thing has been (1.5 years of regular and unrelenting abuse from a power user then 5 months attached to a C-clamp) though I'm starting to wonder if it's finally time to say good bye and part it out on ebay.

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21.43.18 - Mark

I bought a 30GB iPod Video today, and that was about the only good thing that's happened in the last 24 hours.

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Return to society

00.51.47 - Mark

Camp is now officially over. The areas are packed up for the season, the last of the paperwork has been filed and/or archived. The campers, leaders and the idiots who work on staff who couldn't care less about camp are gone. Those left are the kind of people who really truely care about the place and about having a good time with friends and like minded individuals. In other words, some of the best days days in camp are also the saddest.

I'm going to be transitioning back home over the next few days, school over the next couple of weeks, and hopefully a job sometime in between. This time around, I won't deprive myself of camp for over a year - when camping is one of your primary methods of stress release you burn out.

I'll get back into the blogging habit in a few days.

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